A plugin is a software component that adds a specific feature to an existing computer program or enhances its capabilities in IT.
In WordPress, plugins are packages of code that extend the core functionality. WordPress plugins are packages written in PHP programming language (the same as WordPress core), which can also include:
- Other assets, such as images,
- jQuerry, and others.
How do WordPress plugins work?
To start using WordPress plugins on your site, you’ll need to:
- Find a WordPress plugin. To do this, you can use an internal search in the WordPress plugins dashboard,
- Install that plugin on your WordPress site,
- Activate the plugin in the WordPress plugins dashboard, and
- Configure the plugin inside your WordPress dashboard.
What can you find WordPress plugins?
- WordPress.org – the official WordPress plugin directory,
- Commercial websites selling plugins – there are plenty of them. Search on Google to find one,
- Free resources such as software producers’ websites (e.g. Yoast – a WordPress plugin for SEO), or
- A developer can build a plugin for you.
You have to remember to update all of your plugins. This is essential to keeping your site functioning well and securely. You can read more about this in our article What is WordPress maintenance? and also Update, wait, ignore.